THE newly created airfreight division of the French shipping giant CMA CGM Air Cargo recently flew to India for the first time ever a free of charge chartered Airbus A330-200 freighter carrying 28 tonnes of medical equipment worth over INR17 crore (US$2.3 million) from Paris to Delhi.
The French shipping and logistics group CMA CGM started operating its new air cargo division on March 9, 2021, by operating from Liege in Belgium to Chicago, US with its first Airbus A330-200 freighter, reports Mumbai’s STAT Times
The freight included 8 high capacity oxygen generator plants manufactured by the French company Novair. These plants produce medical oxygen from ambient air to supply a hospital’s oxygen system and/or fill cylinders with a flow rate of 20,000 litres per hour.
“Each plant can continuously supply a 250-bed Indian hospital non-stop for a dozen years. This translates into long-term oxygen autonomy, enhanced resilience to peaks in oxygen demand, savings of up to INR15 crore/year for the hospital, and eliminates safety issues related to liquid oxygen storage,” according to a French Embassy in India release.
The oxygen plants will be delivered to eight Indian hospitals, six in Delhi, one in Haryana and one in Telangana, based on needs as identified by the Indian authorities.
In addition to the oxygen plants, this airfreight also included 28 ventilators and 200 electric syringe pushers which will be distributed to several hospitals based on needs to enhance their ICU capacities.
This airfreight is the first phase of France’s solidarity mission. Thanks to the numerous contributions of French companies in India with the active involvement of the Indo-French Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IFCCI), the second delivery of oxygen generators and medical equipment is underway. Moreover, in the following days, French company Air Liquide will begin shipments of several hundred tonnes of oxygen through a dedicated logistical bridge organised by both governments and implemented with the Indian armed forces.
French President Emmanuel Macron said: “Solidarity is at the heart of the strategic partnership between France and India. Each of these oxygen generator plants will make an Indian hospital fully oxygen Aatmanirbhar for more than ten years. I believe healthcare can be a new field to develop our strategic partnership, building on our respective strengths.”